Driving Through Desert Moutains
September 27th, 2016

Keeping Your Brand Dialed In

One of my colleagues recently wrote a great article on making sure your brand standards are updated and relevant. That’s an important piece of advice for any manufacturer who is competing for mind and market share on a daily basis. But so often when we’ve been called into situations to address brand problems with packaging or communications, we find that the standards, and other elements of the brand, don’t even exist. Or are sitting collecting dust on someone’s credenza.

And therein lies the cause and effect of many companies struggling to be relevant and ready to go. They’ve been too busy focusing on the next big campaign or next page of the website, and have lost sight of the very things they are trying to communicate—the essence of their brand.

In today’s marketplace it’s not only critical to brand communications and marketing, but also to new product development, IT, HR, financing, and operations, to keep your brand house in order and in good working condition. It’s so easy to unintentionally allow your brand to unravel, degrade, or be diluted, right before your eyes. But you can prevent it.

Brand Tune Up

I’ve talked about this before. Treat your brand like you treat a very special automobile. Make sure you are regularly servicing it and maintaining it at the optimal performance level. That way it’s always there for you, when you need it most. Once a quarter, audit and review your collateral, web, and communications to make sure they are still on message and still using the voice of the brand—the proper tone and manner, and personality. Make sure they are visually adhering to the standards—the correct fonts, hierarchy of content, style of image, and color palette. And review your brand strategy every time you review your business goals. Make sure that if there is a conditional shift in the market causing you to adjust your plan, that your brand strategy is able to reflect that change without missing a beat.

Communicate the Brand Throughout the Organization

I recently wrote a white paper on designing the authentic connections to form a complete brand ecosystem within your company. This means knowing that your brand is working 24/7 internally to align and influence behavior among your employees to ensure that the customer-facing communication is reflective of the brand’s promise, pillars, and personality. When this becomes second nature, and part of the culture, everyone is monitoring the brand. Because everyone knows why the brand exists and what it stands for. Their responsibility as employees is not only to the company, but to the brand.

When your brand is maintained, and kept in top working condition, just as great leaders inspire action, so will your brand. Simon Sinek talks eloquently about the golden circle of why, how, and what. Which is the same belief system at the core of our brand ecosystem. Knowing why your brand exists will help you develop and maintain how it should be communicated, and most important, help inspire and deliver what it is. Give it a try. Or let us know if you need help.

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